Lithuanian milk and meat products reach more and more markets worldwide

According to information of the State Food and Veterinary Service (SFVS), Lithuanian producers are fairly successful in expanding the export of milk and meat and their products. In 2017, establishments exported more than 63 thousand tons of milk products and 12 thousand tons of meat and meat products. Compared to 2016, the export of milk products increased by 16 % whereas the export of meat increased by 17 %.

In 2017, the export of canned milk increased most of all (by 72 %). Major markets for those products were Libya (68 %) and Hong Kong (12 %). The export of cheese increased by 14 %. Lithuanian cheeses were shipped to South Korea (18 %), the USA (18 %) and Armenia (15 %). Last year, new opportunities opened up for the export of ice cream produced in our country to China. More than 1.1 thousand tons of ice cream was exported. However, the expectation is that more ice cream will be exported after the producers have got established in the market of this enormous country as the consumption of ice cream in China accounts for nearly as many as 20 % of the overall global production

Compared to 2016, export of certain milk products has also increased substantially: milk drinks (by 71 %), milk powder for human consumption (by 32 %), curds (by 29 %), whey by 15 %, cheeses and ice cream (by 14 % each) as well as other milk products, however, the delivery of butter to third countries decreased. Lithuania used to be among leading EU butter exporters to those countries. However, the amount of consigned butter decreased by as many as 91 % as major part of those products was sold by milk processing establishments on the EU market.

The overview of meat export shows that, last year just like any other year before, the share of the export of poultry meat from Lithuania to third countries was the biggest. Last year compared to 2016, the export of this kind of meat increased by 31 %. Due to restrictions related to African swine fever (ASF) that are applied to Lithuania, the trade in pig meat and its products is difficult for meat product producers, therefore, the export of pig meat decreased by 54 % last year.

“Due to joint efforts of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Agriculture and the SFVS, export negotiations are in most cases smooth and professional, the agreement of veterinary certificates is successful. Prior to approval of export permissions, competent specialists from third countries conduct strict checks at farm holdings and establishments in our country. Their favourable opinions and rapid expansion of markets reflect that foodstuffs produced in Lithuania comply with the supreme standards of the European Union and that they are recognised by consumers in many countries”, – said Mr Darius Remeika, Director of the SFVS.

In 2017, permissions were received to export Lithuanian production to Japan (beef and chicken meat), to Algeria ((milk products, beef and meat products), Mexico (milk and milk products), Canada (eggs and egg products), Bosnia and Herzegovina (poultry meat), New Zealand (milk and milk products, frozen products containing beef and pig meat), United Arab Emirates (meat and meat products, eggs).

In Mr D. Remeikas’ words, this year sees further negotiations with China on the export of feedingstuffs, beef and fish products, with the USA, Peru and Cuba on the export of meat products and others. According to the competent authority of Indonesia, questionnaires completed by 12 Lithuanian milk processing establishments were submitted. It is expected that before next year the establishments will be entitled to export their production to this Asian country.